The action taken by mandating the use of an escort tug from the wharf and throughout the South Channel to Beacon SC4, and additional tug availability, should adequately address the issue.
Safety issue description
In pre-trial simulations, the risks associated with engine failure during departure were only considered up to when a ship had entered the South Channel. Consequently, the tugs were not in attendance to assist if propulsion was lost.
Maritime Safety Queensland
14 November 2019
Safety action taken:
The Regional Harbour Master advised the following proactive actions have been taken:
In addition to the trial conditions, an escort tug is now used for all departing bulk carriers.
Escort tugs for departing loaded vessels in excess of 200 m overall length are to be made fast centre lead aft tug are to be released at Beacon SC4.
First choice Escort tug to be 65 tonne bollard pull.
When two vessels are departing, the vessel in excess of 240 m will have the 65 tonne bollard pull tug, the other vessel will utilise one of the 44 tonne tugs. The escort tugs are to remain made fast until released at SC4.
Two continuously manned 85 tonne bollard pull azimuth stern drive tugs are now based at the Port of Amrun and are about 60 minutes steaming time from the Port of Weipa.